The stone forest

Tuesday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!!!!

Jan and I got back from spending last week out in Tucson, Az. As always, it’s great to be out there even if it is in the middle of summer and with the temperature soaring to 109 degrees a couple of days at the end of the week. Even though it was a little warm, it still makes my old body feel good!

On the drive out to Tucson, we were able to stop at one of our favorite places to shoot photos, Petrified Forest National Park. The thing that’s nice is that you have two parts of the park for the price of one. Along with Petrified Forest, you also have the Painted Desert part of the park. Petrified Forest National Park is located right off of Interstate 40 between Holbrook, Az. and Gallup, N.M.

Painted Desert has some great views of the multi colored layered ground and in the morning and afternoon the colors really pop. You can look down into the valley from the cliffs up above and the scenery is spectacular. Petrified Forest has different features from Painted Desert, but it’s just as interesting. One of our favorite parts of Petrified Forest is the area called Crystal Forest. There’s a great walking trail that’s about a quarter mile long that takes you in and around the whole Crystal Forest area and you can walk amongst the petrified trees. It’s amazing to see these trees that are now brightly colored rock. If you’re ever out that way on I-40 in Arizona, it’s a place that I can highly recommend and something that you won’t see anywhere else on Earth.

Here’s a couple of our snaps from the Petrified Forest National Park in Arizona.

Ok, the 4th of July week is over and it’s time to get back to work! We hope that you’re going to have a great rest of the week and thanks as always for taking the time to check out our work!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

5000 photos

Big Easy Monday morning greetings to one and all!!!

We are back on the road once again and I have to tell you that it feels pretty darn good! After having been home in Central Illinois for the past six weeks, we were starting to get that itch to get back on the road, so now we are getting our wish!

5000 photos and you’re asking what that’s all about. Well it’s pretty simple, I’ve been posting my various photos on flickr.com for the past 12 years and it’s been a great place for me to share what I’m shooting for myself. Sure there’s some work photos on here from different client shoots, but for the most part it’s my personal photography and shooting images of the subjects that make me happy! I’ve got a link for you with the 14 different albums of photos on Flickr. There’s a bevy of subjects, so you’ll probably find something that you like! https://www.flickr.com/photos/kevinmay/albums

You might even be wondering what the most viewed photo is from all of my 5000 Flickr photos. Well it would be one the the first shoots that I shot with my good buddy, Mike Rowe back in 2010 in Las Vegas. At the end of a very long day of a video shoot, they asked me if I could get a couple of photos of just Mike and I was happy to help out!

Here’s my most viewed photo!

Ok, it’s time for Jan and I to get busy and get to work! We thank you as always for taking the time to view our work and we hope that you have a great week to come!!!

Thanks again!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Strolling in the Garden District

Monday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!

Well we sure finally had some very nice weather in Central Illinois this past week and what a welcome change it has been! The trees are finally starting to flower and the grass is getting green and growing (I cut the yard twice this past week). The other thing that has been great for me is to be back home and able to take advantage of the nicer weather and getting over to Jubilee College State Park which is practically in my backyard. From my house I can walk over to the park or ride my bike and for the most part durning the week things are pretty calm with not a lot of people out at the park, so I get the place to myself. I’ve been very fortunate to be able to do some video editing work done on the computer durning the morning and then get over to the park for an hour or two and get a little fresh air and exercise before heading back to the house to continue on with my editing fun. It’s so much easier to go to the park when the weather is nice and not -10 below zero!

One of the things that Jan and I like to do when we are in New Orleans is to walk and shoot photos in the Garden District of the city. In past years and trips this has always been a tradition of ours to do this on Christmas eve and it’s great to see and shoot photos of how the homes in the district are all dressed up for the holiday season. With this being the first time that we’ve walked the district outside of the Christmas season, the first thing that caught our attention was the number of people out on walking tours of the district. At Christmas time we pretty much have had the place to ourselves, so we had to work a little bit to avoid all the crowds of people. There’s quite a diverse style of homes in the district and some serious money has been spent by homeowners keeping these incredible places in tip-top shape. All and all it was a great way to spend an afternoon seeing the homes with all the vegetation in full bloom and being able to snap a few photos as well!

Here’s a couple of our snaps from the Garden District in New Orleans.

It’s time for us to get to work and we’ve got a couple of shoots and more video editing to tackle this week. We hope that you’re going to have a great week and thanks as always for taking the time to check out our work!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Houmas House

Monday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!

We’ve had some very wacky weather here in Central Illinois this year and things have been cooler then normal. Usually by this time of the year, I’ve cut the yard at my house multiple times and even in past years I’ve cut it as early as mid-March. Well with all the cold weather here I haven’t cut the yard once yet! Here we are at the end of April and it’s just amazing to me that I haven’t had to cut it yet. Well trust me, that will come to an end at some point this week because I’ll finally have to cut it, but to think that the first time would be in May is amazing!

While we were down in Louisiana a week ago, we made a stop over at the Houmas House in Darrow, La. Houmas House is an incredible plantation and gardens that has been fully restored back to it’s original condition from back in the 1800’s. You can tour the inside of the house and then afterwards walk the beautiful gardens. The best part for us is that we were able to shoot photos and you know that makes us both very happy.

Here’s a few of our snaps from the Houmas House.

We hope that you’re going to have a great week and thanks as always for taking the time to check out our work!

Thanks again!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Down in the Quarter

Monday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!

It’s good to be back home again after being on the road down in Louisiana this past week. It was also nice to have a little warmer weather then what we’ve been having in Central Illinois here in April. We should be a little warmer then we’ve been, but it seems like a strange year for weather and I’m sure at some point summer is just around the corner.

We had a nice bonus on this trip being able to spend a few extra days in New Orleans and as always the city was great. When you’ve got a city that’s as old as New Orleans, there’s a lot of different architecture styles around town and for a couple of photographers like Jan and I, that’s a great thing. The French Quarter is one of our favorite areas to walk around and shoot photos because of the history and style of the buildings and houses. In the last few hours of any day’s sunlight in the Quarter, the colors, shapes and shadows that we find are amazing. I could probably walk that area a hundred times and still not shoot everything that’s there!

Here’s a few of our photos from an afternoon spent in the French Quarter of New Orleans.

It’s time for us to get to work, so we hope that you’re going to have a great week to come and thanks for taking the time to look at our photography!

Thanks again!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Year 28 is done!

Monday morning greetings to one and all from Lafayette, La.!

Yes, I started the road to be self-employed on April 15th of 1990 and its been quite a ride all these many years! We’ve been incredibly blessed to have so many wonderful clients that have seen the value in what we do to hire us and help keep this train rolling. There’s so many great memories of some very wonderful shoots either from the location that we were shooting at and having beautiful weather to some of the down right most nasty places that you’d ever want to be in, but I must say that to appreciate the good shoots, you’ve got to have a few that aren’t the most ideal. The good thing is that more often then not, we are fortunate to have a lot of really good shoots and get to work with a lot of very nice people! The other thing that I always enjoy as well is that we get to have some laughs and some fun on these shoots regardless of what’s going on and that sure makes the time that we spend with our clients that much better! Jan and I will continue to roll along this year and the finish line is in sight, so there’s still more fun to be had.

One of our fun things to do when we are out on the road is to get out and shoot some photography for ourselves and yesterday we got to do that. We made a run down to Avery Island, La. and for those that don’t know it, that’s the home of Tabasco. It’s a great place to visit and if you have time you can take a tour of the plant and that’s a lot of fun to see the process of how all the different Tabasco sauces are produced at Avery Island. The other thing that you can do is to visit the Jungle Gardens which is right next door to the plant and part of the Tabasco facilities. At this time of the year there’s not a lot of flowers in bloom, but there’s still plenty of things to see and shoot photos of while you are there. Jan was able to get some great shots of the birds at the bird sanctuary where there are hundreds of egrets nesting. She also was able to get a great shot of some of the alligators that are there as well and for those of you that are adventurous, you can walk right up to the alligators because there aren’t any fences and they are out in the open at the gardens. I wouldn’t recommend it though because even the junior alligators could take a finger off if you’re not careful. I was able to get a couple of photos of the Pagoda that houses the giant 900 year old Buddha statue from China. All and all it was a great day spent at the Tabasco facilities and Jungle Gardens.

Here’s our photos from Avery Island, La.

Ok, it’s time to get year 29 started and we are both ready to go! There’s work to be done and our busy summer season is just about ready to kick in so there’s going to be a lot going on! Thanks again to all the wonderful clients that have supported us and continue to hire us for the many gigs that we are doing each year!

We hope that you’re going to have a great week to come and thanks again!!!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Back home for now

Monday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!

Well it sure is nice to be back home for at least a week or so! Our massive West coast, East Coast, West Coast rode trip is over and that’s a very good feeling. Now it’s not that we had a bad time and are sick of traveling, but it’s more of all the time spent on the road that has us glad to be back home. There’s something very nice about sleeping in your own bed and eating your own food that you long for when you’re on the road for an extended period of time. We flew to Tucson, Az. and then back to Peoria three weeks ago. Then we drove to North Carolina and back to Peoria two weeks ago and then we flew to California last Monday and we were back home on Thursday night. That’s a lot of time spent in the car and at airports and on the planes too. Sure we’ve had more traveling then that at times, but it seems like this last little stretch was more busy then normal! That’s ok because we love what we do and if we didn’t, the time spent on the road would be hell!

California is a great place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there! The thing that really stands out to me coming from a smaller town in the Midwest is the level of traffic that they have in the state. I’m not talking about just the Los Angeles area either, but even out in the country it’s crazy. The other thing that I realized is that you have to be a very defensive driver as well and this goes back to my days riding the Harley. You always have to be looking for an “out” because there’s stuff going on all the time on the road. Our shoot was about four hours North of L.A. and coming back in the middle of the day mind you, when traffic is about as good as it’s going to get durning the day, we saw three accidents on the 405 and they weren’t just fender benders! It’s amazing to see five lanes of traffic completely shut down to a “stop and go” pace because of accidents like this. I guess that’s part of life in a big city and more power to those that have to live there and deal with that on a daily basis! I’ll stick to the corn fields and the cows in Central Illinois thank you!

We’ve got a quick snap this morning that Jan took in Manhattan Beach, Ca. and there’s something that I loved about the setting sun along with the “stop” sign painted on the road that really grabbed me.

It’s time to get busy and get rocking on another week, so thanks for taking the time to check out our work and we hope that you’re going to have a great week!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

West Coast, East Coast, West Coast

Monday morning Huntington, Wv. greetings to one and all!!!

Yes, it’s been a crazy few weeks and there’s more craziness to come in the next few weeks and that’s ok becuase that’s what keeps us young!!! 🙂

We were out West last week on a shoot and got back to Peoria for a couple of days and then got a call to come out to the East coast for a shoot this week. After the shoot this week, we’ll be back to Peoria for a couple of days before flying back out to the Los Angles area next week for another shoot. Lots and lots of traveling and sometimes that’s the nature of what we do and after all these years it’s something that we’ve become accustomed too. That’s one of the things that I do think keeps us young is that we can shift gears at the drop of a hat and plans can change and we respond and make things happen!

As always when time permits, Jan and I love to get out on a road-trip and go shoot a few photos for ourselves. This past week we were able to get away for an afternoon and head over to Saguaro National Park (the Eastern section) in Tucson, Az. and walk around a bit and shoot some nature photography. With temperatures in the mid 70’s and plentiful sunshine, it’s not to hard to be outside and enjoying the weather knowing that the weather in Peoria at this time of the year isn’t nearly as nice!!!

Here’s a couple of our snaps from Saguaro East and an afternoon of enjoying life!!!

We’ll we’ve got to pack up the family truckster (https://youtu.be/oPzqgKPzdFA) and get rolling down the road for our shoot tomorrow. You have a great week to come and thanks as always for taking the time to check out our work!!!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Back in town

Monday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!

Well it sure is nice to be back home even if it’s only for a few days! Jan and I were up in International Falls, Minnesota for a shoot last week and it was a snow shoot and fortunately for us and the shoot, we had plenty of snow! The other good thing is that it wasn’t insanely cold and that makes being outside all day a lot more tolerable. It looks like we’re here in Peoria this week and than back on the road again this coming weekend, so we’re going to get regrouped and be ready to get going once again!

Hawaii; Jan and I were there back over the Christmas holiday and into the first part of the new year and it seems like it was just yesterday and that’s a good thing. As some of you know, we do love to shoot photos for ourselves at some of the botanical gardens all around the country. There’s something very enjoyable about being out and seeing all the different species of plants from that area and also in some cases vegetation from around the world. While we were on the Big Island of Hawaii there is an incredible place called “Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden”. HTBG is just North of the city of Hilo and it’s a very special place. When you get there, it’s like being in the Amazon rainforest and they’ve got over 2000 different types of plants at their place. When we were getting our tickets, I heard the casher telling the couple in front of us that most people spend about an hour there at HTBG. Needless to say when it comes to spending time at a botanical gardens for Jan and I, we’re not your average couple and we ended up spending five hours at the garden. We would have stayed longer, but had to drive back to the other side of the island. If you’re on the Big Island and you’re looking for a unique experience, check out HTBG and you won’t be disappointed!

Here’s a few of our snaps from our day spent at Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden.

Thanks as always for taking the time to check out our work and we hope that you’re going to have a great week to come!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version

Ready to roll

Monday morning Peoria greetings to one and all!

Jan and I are rocking and rolling as always and getting things done as well and that’s never a bad thing. We’ve got one more week here in town before we head out on the road once again for a number of gigs around the country in the next couple of months. We’ll be going from gig to gig and there will be some driving and also some flights, so it’s going to be a mix of fun and adventures!!!

One of the questions I sometimes get when people hear that we like going to the Big Island of Hawaii is why we like that island so much over the other Hawaiian Islands. It’s really a very simple answer for us, it’s less crowded then all of the other islands and also has the most diverse ecosystem. Wow, ecosystems? Yes, ecosystems! Most of us would think of the islands of Hawaii as just being palm trees and sandy beaches and that’s far from the truth. The big island sure has plenty of palm trees and tropical weather by the ocean, but when you head up to the center of the island you’ll see the two large volcanos that formed the big island, Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa and at this time of the year they have snow on top! Mauna Kea is almost 14,000 feet high and while we were there a few weeks ago, they even had a winter storm warning for the top of Mauna Kea! Even though we didn’t make it to the top of Mauna Kea, we could still see all the snow from down below!

Now that you’ve heard all about the tropics to the snow on the Big Island, I want to tell you about the area in between those two extremes. Waimea is the home to the Parker Ranch and if you didn’t know better, you’d think that you were out West somewhere in Montana in cattle and horse country. You’ll see lots of grazing grasslands and Jan’s photo this week really shows you that countryside. In the town of Waimea, it’s a lot like a Midwestern farming community and one of our favorite places to shoot is the Ke Ola Mau Loa Church also know as the “Green Church”. Waimea is a nice place to get a little change of pace on a trip to the Big Island!

Here’s our two snaps from Waimea.

Thanks as always for taking the time to check out our work and we hope that you’re going to have a great week to come!!!!!!

Kev and Jan

Click on the image to see a larger version